I was recently reading my pathology report and it said Triple Negative Breast Cancer grade 9 (3+3+3) on the nottingham scale - my tumor was about 6cm but had not spread to any lymph nodes - what is grade 9?

Asked by

anonymous

Survivor since 2009 about 3 years ago
  • anonymous
    Family Member or Loved One

    Hi Blair,

    I was curious about your question and did a bit of research. Here is the best answer I came up with. It was given by:

    Kevin R. Fox, MD, Assistant Director, Clinical Affairs and Associate Professor of Hematology/Oncology at the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania, responds:

    The Nottingham histologic score is simply a scoring system to assess the "grade" of breast cancers.

    It is a total score based on 3 different sub-scores. The 3 sub-scores are assigned based on 3 components of how the breast cancer cells look under a microscope. (The details of these 3 components are not critical for you to understand). Each of the 3 components is assigned a sub-score of 1, 2, or 3, with 1 being best and 3 being worst. Once the 3 sub-scores are added, a Nottingham score is obtained: the minimum score possible is 3 (1+1+1) and the maximum possible is 9 (3+3+3).

    A histologic grade of III is assigned to any patient with a Nottingham score of 8 or 9. Grade I refers to Nottingham scores of 3, 4, and 5, while Grade II refers to Nottingham scores of 6 and 7.

    In the end, the Nottingham score and histologic grades are not very useful in the big picture, as they do not alter final overall treatment recommendations. High-score cancers tend to relapse more often than low-score cancers. Ultimately, however, we don't use the score in making clinical decisions.

    I hope that this helps clear up any confusion. I wish you the best.

    about 3 years ago Flag
    • anonymous
      Survivor since 2009

      thank you

      about 3 years ago Flag
    • anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Blair,
      I also have triple-negative breast cancer. My tumor was about the size of yours. Most people I've talked to seem to have smaller ones. I've had chemo, and just finished radiation. I don't think anyone gave mine a score. I hope...

      see more

      Blair,
      I also have triple-negative breast cancer. My tumor was about the size of yours. Most people I've talked to seem to have smaller ones. I've had chemo, and just finished radiation. I don't think anyone gave mine a score. I hope everything goes well for you.

      judy

      about 3 years ago Flag
    • anonymous
      Survivor since 2011

      My tumor was triple negative too. I had read about how it's more likely to recur, but things I read were from 2-3 years ago and a lot has changed since then. My doctors think its unlikely mine will come back based on how it kept shrinking from...

      see more

      My tumor was triple negative too. I had read about how it's more likely to recur, but things I read were from 2-3 years ago and a lot has changed since then. My doctors think its unlikely mine will come back based on how it kept shrinking from chemo, then margins were clear after surgery and I'll have radiation soon. I guess my point is, every tumor is different, even those that are the rare triple neg.

      over 2 years ago Flag
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  • anonymous
    Survivor since 2010

    Do you have a family history? If yes, I suggest genetic testing for the BRCA gene mutation.

    almost 3 years ago Flag
    • anonymous
      Survivor since 2009

      I lost my sign in information and just found it - Yes Sarah, I had the BRCA testing done and am BRCA negative. I also joined the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation's web site and have gotten more information and my path reports and...

      see more

      I lost my sign in information and just found it - Yes Sarah, I had the BRCA testing done and am BRCA negative. I also joined the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation's web site and have gotten more information and my path reports and understand them better now. Thanks so much

      over 2 years ago Flag
    • Comment

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